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overhead of mac and cheese in a bowl with a spoon in it

Plant-Based Mac and Cheese

This plant-based mac and cheese is not only vegan but it's also oil-free, nut-free, soy-free and gluten-free. Made from a base of potatoes, carrots, pumpkin seeds, nutritional yeast and seasonings, the cheesy sauce is 100% plant-based and easy to whip up in your blender. Mix with your favorite gluten-free pasta for an easy main course or side dish.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Gluten-Free, Vegan
Keyword gluten free, mac and cheese, nut free, oil free, pasta, soy-free, vegan, vegan cheese
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 -6
Calories 329kcal


  • ¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 1 ¾ cup peeled and chopped yellow or gold potatoes (chopped into small pieces of similar size)
  • 1 cup peeled and chopped carrots
  • 8 oz gluten-free pasta (I used Banza cavatappi; be sure to use soy-free pasta to keep this recipe soy-free)
  • ½ cup nutritional yeast
  • 10 tablespoon filtered water (plus 1-2 tablespoon more if needed)
  • 2 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoon fine sea salt or kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground mustard
  • teaspoon garlic powder
  • tsp onion powder
  • tsp turmeric


  • Veggies to mix in such as: broccoli, peas, spinach, kale
  • Toppings such as: black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, herbs, hot sauce, nutritional yeast flakes, vegan Parmesan cheese


  • Cover pumpkin seeds with boiling water and set aside for 20 minutes.
  • Add the potatoes and carrots to a 2-quart pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until soft (approximately 10-12 minutes).
  • While the pumpkin seeds are soaking and the potatoes and carrots are cooking, cook gluten-free pasta according to package directions.
  • While the pumpkin seeds are soaking and the potatoes, carrots and pasta are cooking, add nutritional yeast, water, lemon juice, salt, ground mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, turmeric to a high-powered blender. 
  • Drain pumpkin seeds along with the potatoes and carrots in a mesh strainer (5 ½" or 7 ⅞" size) and add to the blender.
  • Secure the lid and blend on high, scraping down the sides as needed, until the ingredients are well-incorporated and the sauce is smooth and creamy (approximately 2 minutes). If the sauce is a little too thick, you can add 1-2 additional tablespoons of water.
  • When the pasta is done, drain in a colander (rinse only if package directs) and return to the pot or a large mixing or serving bowl.
  • Pour the sauce onto the pasta and mix in until well-combined.



Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Reheat leftovers in a microwave safe dish in 30-second intervals, stirring in between. 
The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. Accuracy is not guaranteed. Information shown should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Nutrition was calculated using Banza chickpea pasta.


Calories: 329kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Fiber: 10g